With just weeks to go until Christmas the Cork public are once again being urged to shop a little closer to home this festive season and support their local businesses. This is the underlying message of the ‘Think Cork County’ campaign, an initiative of Cork County Council which is now in its third year, as it returns for 2018, encouraging residents of County Cork to ‘shop local, think your county, your town’.
This year’s campaign was officially launched at Cork County Hall, by Mayor of the County of Cork Cllr Patrick Gerard Murphy and Sharon Corcoran, Director of Services - Economic Development Enterprise and Tourism, to mark the month-long countdown to Christmas. The initiative, which encourages the people of Cork to support and appreciate their local craftspeople, food suppliers, post offices, hairdressers and the many other business and service providers in their locale, was originally established in 2016 to promote the ‘shop local’ objective, with a view to boosting the economy of Cork’s various municipal districts.
While the principal aim of ‘Think Cork County’ is to recognise the abundance of eclectic businesses and services located all across Cork, it also encourages members of the public to indulge in a spot of retail therapy in their nearest town or village by providing designated free on-street parking zones in selected areas in the lead up to Christmas. It serves as a reminder to Cork county residents that they do not always have to travel to the city or shop online in search of the items or services they require; they can instead avoid lengthy traffic queues and parking struggles by availing of the plentiful goods and services on offer on their doorstep.
Speaking at the official campaign launch, Sharon Corcoran echoed this sentiment:
“We’ve all been in a position where we’re stuck in a stream of traffic, when it’s cold and wet outside and we’re rushing to make the shops before they close,” she said. “This adds unnecessary stress and strain at a time when we should be relaxed and in high spirits, so by opting to shop and park for free in your local town or village, you reduce this all-too-familiar headache. Aside from this, by shopping local you are also contributing to the growth and development of your homeplace, supporting the talented entrepreneurs and business-owners in your local area and ensuring that your hard-earned money is pumped right back into your community.”
Also commenting at the launch, Mayor Murphy said:
“As Corkonians, we are spoiled to be surrounded by such amazing quality when it comes to what is produced and on offer so close to home. Each community in Cork makes a huge effort at this time of year to ensure our towns and villages are beautifully decorated and lit up, with everything we could possibly need available in the many shops and businesses on our doorstep. It really is the perfect time to spend at home – in every sense of the word!”
Whether it’s choosing your local post office to send those all-important season’s greetings cards, creating a festive feast from the amazing local produce available at your village’s many food stores and eateries or simply being a part of the wonder that is created by the lighting up of your town’s twinkling lights, think your county, your town this Christmas.
Full listings of where free carparking is available can be found at www.corkcoco.ie. Follow @CorkCoCo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.